Research Archive

Research Progress & Insights Research Progress and Insights

Track 1: Engage Stakeholders

Research Accomplishments
  • In December 2010, the program engaged in a Mobility Workshop with over 150 attendees to identify and define the data-capture needs associated with new, dynamic mobility applications.
  • The DCM program has participated in a number of joint stakeholder engagement events with the DMA program over the last 18 months with the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE), AASHTO, ITS America (ITSA), University Transportation Centers (UTCs), American Public Transportation Association (APTA), Transportation Research Board (TRB), National Science Foundation (NSF), I-95 Corridor Coalition, North American World Trade Group (NATWG), freight-industry stakeholders, and Transportation Safety Advisory Group (TSAG).
  • A public stakeholder workshop to review progress and gather input was jointly hosted with the DMA program in May 2012.
  • DCM and RDE workshops were held in the Washington DC area in late March 2014. State, local, and industry stakeholders convened to provide input about the future of the Research Data Exchange and the DCM program.
Critical Research Insights
  • Stakeholders strongly concur with the open-data concept, the provision of research data through the RDE, and the program direction of the DCM program. Stakeholders see the need for data discovery and data visualization tools on the RDE, and the need for establishing a business case for encouraging the states to participate in data collection for connected vehicle applications.
Next Steps
  • Continue engagement with established stakeholder groups.
  • Finalize the DCM Stakeholder Communications Plan
  • Follow-up RDE and DCM workshops are planned for early 2015.

Track 2: Coordinated Research and Development

Research Accomplishments
  • The State of the Practice Assessment and Innovation Scan report, delivered April 2011, conducted a scan of current practices in data capture and management methods and technologies in transportation (light vehicles, transit, and freight) and other fields; explored emerging technologies and innovative methods in real-time data management and distribution; and developed a recommendations plan for data environment development and management for Phase 2.
  • A Data Business Plan (DBP) was developed in 2012 that addressed the need to improve the coordination and communication mechanism across US DOT offices to avoid investing resources to the same or similar types of data related program. The DBP serves as prototype for other FHWA offices and provides leadership by suggesting or offering best data collection/ management practices to primary data collectors. Two Data Business Plan pilots were conducted in 2013.
  • The BSM Emulator task has developed a tool for simulating mobile wireless messaging protocols and estimating key transportation measures. Build 2 of the software was delivered to the Open Source Application Development Portal (OSADP) in March 2014.
  • In 2012 and 2013 white papers were developed to assess the extent to which the Basic Safety Message (BSM) message or variants of this message support or enable the set of six high-priority DMA application bundles and other potential mobility, weather and environmental applications.
  • In 2013 and 2014 Oak Ridge National Laboratory conducted research into techniques for ensuring that Personally Identifiable Information cannot be derived from data in the Research Data Exchange.
  • In early 2014 Volpe National Transportation Center delivered a white paper considering the potential for the use of “Big Data” storage and analytic techniques for connected vehicle applications.
  • The US Japan-EU Probe Data Research task has resulted in a Research Plan (March 2012, Fact sheet (September 2013), and Final Report (October 2013).
  • The task to Implement and Test Institutional & Policy Processes has resulted in a Framework for Governance of the Research Data Exchange and Open Source Application Development Portal
  • The Standards Coordination Plan task has resulted in the delivery of an Overall Standards Coordination Plan (Feb. 2012), a Scan of Applicable Standards and Determination of Gaps (Sept.2 102), and a Focused Standards Coordination Plan for Mobility and Road Weather applications (Nov. 2012).
  • U.S. Department of Transportation's Research and Innovative Technology Administration and the Federal Highway Administration released the first version of the Research Data Exchange (RDE), a transportation data sharing system that promotes sharing of archived and real-time data from multiple sources and multiple modes. This new data sharing capability will support the needs of Intelligent Transportation System researchers and developers while reducing costs and encouraging innovation. Data accessible through the RDE is quality-checked, well-documented, and available to the public.
Critical Research Insights
  • Although current data sets on the RDE have little potential for revealing PII, techniques for ensuring that PII cannot be derived from posted data must be strengthened when significantly larger data environments (containing data for more than one day) are to be posted/
  • "Big Data" storage and analytic techniques are likely to play a major role the future of the connected vehicle program. Future projects should consider how big techniques may be incorporated in connected vehicle data processing.
  • The DCM analysis of which components of the Basic Safety Message will be essential for connected vehicle applications was a key input to the 2014 NHTSA decision to move toward requiring new vehicles to generate and transmit BSM messages.
Next Steps
  • Continue to enhance the BSM Emulator, adding more sophisticated communications modeling and more message types.
  • Continue research on Big Data storage, collection, and analytic techniques, including methods for controlling the amount of data collected, such as Dynamic Interrogative Data Capture (DIDC).
  • Continuing progress for coordinating probe data messages with Japan and the EU.

Track 3: Conduct Proof-of-Concept Tests and Testing

Research Accomplishments
  • In July, 2011, the DCM program established a real-time data feed from the V2I/V2V and Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center Saxton Laboratory field test bed.
  • In November 2011, the DCM program completed an industry state-of-the-practice and innovation scan project that reviewed existing practices in data-capture technologies.
Critical Research Insights
  • The establishment of the real-time data feed proved that real-time data-sharing from connected vehicles is possible and practical.
  • The innovation scan highlighted that a range of industry best practices can support connected vehicle data capture, including cloud-based computing, crowdsourcing, data federation, virtual warehousing, and dynamic interrogative data exchange.
Next Steps
  • Advanced Connected Messaging prototypes will be constructed and studied at the Southeast Michigan Testbed.
  • Advanced Field Testing will be held for data capture, management, and integration.
  • Tests will be conducted of the ability to integrate the operation of mobile devices with that of vehicle-based devices.

Track 4: Demonstrations

Research Accomplishments
  • In May 2010, the Prototype Data Environment (PDE) went live. The PDE documented and posted data from VII POC and NCAR tests.
  • To organize the data, the DCM program developed meta-data guidelines May 2012.
  • In May 2012, the PDE was transitioned to the RDE as the first step in moving toward a federated exchange.
  • Four probe vehicle/infrastructure/transit data sets were added to the RDE in 2012. These data sets were procured for initial testing in January 2012. The data sets were scrubbed of existing personally-identifiable information (PII).
  • By late 2013 the number of data environments in the RDE grew to 10 and advanced search techniques capabilities were added.
  • The Road Weather program has joined with the DCM program to demonstrate the ability to capture integrated mobile observations in real-time in the PDE.
Critical Research Insights
  • There is a clear role for the DCM program to document and provide data from a variety of connected vehicle research efforts; the RDE is a critical component in assimilating multisource weather, transportation, and vehicle data from multiple research projects to enable the use of accurate, timely data for application testing and prototype development.
  • There is strong support in the DCM Stakeholder community for the future of the RDE as a source of connected vehicle data for research and for prototypes of operational deployment.
  • The RDE will need to enhance its ability to protect PII when multi-day trajectories are added, to integrate multi-source data, and to emulate the provision of real-time data from an archived data set.
Next Steps
  • Continue to populate the RDE with additional data sets, and build the research community.
  • Establish a link between the RDE and the Weather Data Environment to create a Federated data environment.
  • Coordinate with completed, ongoing, and planned demonstrations, including two months of data from the Safety Pilot Model Deployment to access connected vehicle data for mobility application research, prototype testing, and benefit assessment.
  • Receive data in the RDE from DMA prototype demonstrations.
  • Build and test prototype Operational Data Environments and include data from these in the RDE.

Track 5: Develop Evaluation and Performance Measures

Research Accomplishments
  • In May 2011, the DCM program developed a draft evaluation framework for data sets, anticipated to be released through the RDE.
  • The DCM program is in the process of establishing uniform metrics for measuring the impacts of data sets released through the DCM program; these impacts are related to both the number of users and the range of research conducted with use of the data sets.
Critical Research Insights
  • Initial development of the RDE has validated the need for accurate data attributes and metrics to enable multisource open data to be accessible to enable mobility applications research, testing, and deployment.
Next Steps
  • Expand the data collection capabilities of the RDE as they relate to DCM program evaluation.
  • Set the quarterly process of DCM evaluation in motion, including interviews with DCM stakeholders.

Track 6: Share the Program’s Findings and Procedures

Research Accomplishments
  • In the summer of 2011, the DCM program jointly hosted a webinar series that presented the Research Data Exchange Concept (July 2011) and Innovation Scan Findings (August 2011).
Critical Research Insights
  • A strength demonstrated by the program outreach to date is the ability to connect with organizations that are interested in sharing research data around the world. A range of agencies from Japan, the European Union (EU), universities, and transit agencies have provided data and expressed interest in the PDE and upcoming RDE.
Next Steps
  • Encourage use of data products posted to the RDE with universities.
  • Issue data-related challenges (jointly with the DMA program) in the summer of 2012.